How to Make Binaural Audio
UPDATE April 15, 2019: We just made a really cool interactive page on our website that will show you step by step how to make binaural audio on an iPhone, Android, GoPro, Field Recorder, Live stream, computer or on ANY app. Check it out here: https://hookeaudio.com/how-to-record-binaural-3d-audio-to-any-device/
Binaural audio is the future of recording. Binaural audio is essentially sound in the space that you hear it. You’ve probably heard of binaural beats and have heard it pass in conversation, but still don’t know exactly what it is. While it is still finding its place in the ears of consumers, artists, musicians, bloggers and journalists have been turning themselves into 21st century storytellers with the use of 3D audio. If spatial audio is something you are interested in and want to experiment with, allow us to show you to how to make binaural audio.
Binaural audio is sound captured identically to the way you ears experience sound. It fills all the dimensions, so it is all-encompassing (just like your ears hear). If you change the position of your head during recording, then the way that you hear the sound changes. It is all about how your mind perceives and processes the localization of the sound and where it is coming from. When you listen back to a binaural recording, it’s like you are right back in that space and frame, which is the truly mesmerizing part. It transfers you right back to that specific moment in time, and that means that all the feelings come rushing back as well. It can be used in a multitude of ways, and we are excited to see how people begin to use it. Hear the difference:
Get The Right Gear
The first thing you want to make sure of is that you have access to the right equipment. You’ll need a proper microphone, a digital audio workstation (or DAW for short) and a basic knowledge of how to use it. There are microphones specialized to make binaural audio and record the sound as is that are easily attainable (see our list below), but if you do not have access to one of those microphones, there are easy ways to get around buying an expensive piece of equipment.
The Roland CS-10EM doubles as in-ear monitors and binaural headphones. The stereo microphones are the backs of the headphones, and come with two 1/8th jacks so you can plug them both into an interface and monitor what you are recording in the moment. Because they are headphones, they follow your every movement and capture sound in real-time and space. A Handy Recorder works great with these as an interface, with four different polar options so you can even use the recorder as a microphone. (But when the headphones are plugged in, make sure it’s set to XY.) This is light, portable, and a great way to capture 3D sound in a variety of ways.
If you want to go a little further, the Hooke Verse lets you record binaural audio AND video in real time. It is the world’s first binaural audio headset and was priced for the everyday person, so that it is not limited to anyone in particular. Anybody can be a storyteller with the Hooke Verse, and it is not limited to those with an extensive knowledge on 3D sound. It also allows you to capture binaural audio to smartphone which the Roland does not allow for. There is no one special person who can or cannot have access to binaural audio now: it is for the content creators, for the artists and the storytellers to share their work with the world.
Binaural audio is the next step in recording. It puts people right in the middle of the action, and does not have to be reserved for just music. Journalists and bloggers can use it on the go to cover topics and stories and get their viewers right in the middle of the action. Travelers can document their trips, reminisce later on and be put back right in those same amazing places. Artists can bring their art to a whole new level–binaural audio and recording makes art so much more interactive, and the possibilities for artists are seemingly endless. Take viewers on a walk-through of your gallery and upload it online for the world to see. Musicians can record rehearsals and performances, shows, upload them online to share their experiences with friends and family. Filmmakers get an entirely new experience added to their work as 3D sound fully submerges the audience in the world that they created.
There are a ton of options to get involved with binaural sound and incorporate it into our daily lives. If you want to become a storyteller, you can check out the options above and check out our YouTube and see what we have accomplished so far. But there is always room for more–more content, more stories, more creators. The possibilities for art and stories seems endless. So what are you waiting for?
Keep on listening, and get creating!
Hooke Team Member